5G could be available in Taiwan as early as January 2020

Vice Premier Chen Chi-mai said the Executive Yuan is pushing for the prompt completion of Taiwan's 5G build-out.

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5G services could be ready by January, said Vice Premier Chen.

5G services could be ready by January, said Vice Premier Chen.

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Fifth Generation (5G) wireless services could be available in Taiwan as early as January, according to the Executive Yuan.

Vice Premier Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) said today (Friday, April 19) during a speech at the 2019 Future Commerce Forum that the Executive Yuan is pushing for the prompt completion of Taiwan’s 5G build-out, which was scheduled to be finished by June 2020. Chen said it may now be completed as early as January, according to the Central New Agency.

A revised list of businesses that Tier I Telecommunications Enterprises can operate by is currently under public review, after the Ministry of Transport and Communication published it last month. The final draft will be submitted to the Executive Yuan for approval in June.

The National Communications Commission’s (NCC) will then consult with the Executive Yuan on 5G spectrum planning and auction preparation. The NCC estimates eight to 10 months will be needed to complete the allocation process, meaning the first wave of 5G licenses will be issued within the first half of 2020.

The Board of Science and Technology Office Executive Secretary Tsai Zsehong (蔡志宏) recently said, however, that the Legislative Yuan has asked for licensing to be completed quicker. The board has already indicated the time frame it needs to complete procedures, he said, but the final licensing decision lies with the Executive Yuan.

Chen said during his speech at the forum that the government stands firm behind its “5+2 Innovative Industries Plan,” which aims to boost Taiwan’s competitiveness in the industry technology market. The government needs to establish a suitable legal environment to ensure it can keep up with the times, he said.

Chen spent time visiting booths, interacting with industry professionals and testing augmented reality (AR) technology at the forum, CNA reports.